What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Saturday, October 30, 2021

Saturday Hoots and Strolls and Good Medicine

Hoot Hoot Hoot Hello!! 

It's Halloween Eve, and all the little owls out here in "hooterville" have gathered to get ready for the fun that will transpire here in about 24 hours...

They have each found a good place to perch so they can watch for the little ghosts and goblins that will be parading past our front door yelling "Trick or Treat"

Yeah, I'd say there will be a lot of hootin' and hollering going on over here...won't you come join the fun?

It's been five days since my surgery, and can you tell I must be getting bored?  Ha Ha.  I guess I just needed to get up and make myself do something!  To be honest, I have been feeling just a tad sorry for myself 'cause for some strange reason I thought I would be fixed instantly once I had this spinal fusion done to my neck...I thought the nerve pains and muscle spasms would just magically disappear and I'd be up and running and ready to go by now.

Well, 'taint so... I still got them and they still wake me up at night and I'm taking pills and rubbing on lotions and praying they'd just go away and let me sleep. Plus I still can't eat much because swallowing is still a bit of an effort and it just takes so much time to wash down every bite, so I don't have much appetite...you'd think I'd lose some weight...but the scales haven't budged...what's that all about?

Yeah, I'm having myself a pity party. Me, myself and I. But I told my husband about it. Told him I wanted my "mommy to come and take care of me."  Do you ever feel that way? It's not that he's not helping me enough...he's doing a great job...I'm just overtired and wanting to get back to "normal" quicker and maybe I just want someone to pamper me just a little bit more until I feel better, like Mommy used to do when she'd put the little bell beside my bed and tell me to ring it when I needed something when I was really sick.

Or maybe I just need to get outside and enjoy some fresh air and quit my whining.
These were the skies this morning at sunrise.  They weren't looking too promising for a nice day...and it sure felt kind of chilly and cold and breezy...

But by 9:00 it looked like this and hubby talked me into taking a stroll with him.

Yeah, he knew what I needed

This is my newest "glamour shot"...a little improvement over the last one taken in the hospital HERE

I sure won't need much of a costume for Halloween...still got those stitches in my neck (actually just glue with steri strips), and I can see I still look a little swollen...I could probably pass for Mrs. "Frankensteiner" instead of Mrs. Steiner. LOL.  But taking a walk in the woods was just what I needed.

And then we came home and I did a little bit of porch sittin' cause it was just SO pretty out... a perfect autumn day!
This is our porch sitting time of year. I need to enjoy it while it lasts...

I took this picture from inside the house, and you can see the reflection of the flag from the front porch...looks like it is flying out there in the back over the pond too!  

But even after all this enjoying the fresh air and porch and stuff I was still feeling a little bit down. Mostly overtired I think...kind of the "post-partum blues" of surgery I'd call it. Then a dear friend from church called to check on me and it was like the sun came back out and the birds started singing and my heart felt lighter.  It was as if a fresh wind from heaven blew through the phone and stirred the coals of my soul back up into a living flame.

I went into the kitchen and saw this verse on the little display that I have set up for fall. Perfect, wouldn't you say?

And I began to feel more grateful and less pitiful...

More blessed and less stressed...

More Thank-FULL and not so thank LESS.

Yes, the Lord knew what I needed today and He sent it to me in small bites and doses...

"A merry heart does good, like medicine,
But a broken spirit dries the bones."
Proverbs 17:22

It also proved to me how important it is to remember those who are sick or recuperating from surgery, etc., with a card or a phone call when possible. I am trying to get better at that, but I tend to put it off or forget until I see the person all well and they are so thankful for all the cards and calls they got that helped them so much and I'm thinking "there I blew it again..."   But even our posts here and our comments to one another can make such a difference in how a person feels.  I am way behind in responding to comments but I am trying to get caught up by visiting your posts instead as I can.  Right now I can't sit at the computer for a long time and I have to make myself get up and move around, etc., etc., and so I get behind.  But I treasure each and every one of you and your comments are always such a blessing to me.  You are like the "merry hearts" that are good medicine!  Thank you for being here!
And never fear, I will get better. I know it. I'm just wanting it sooner rather than later.  But God has me here, sitting "Beside the Still Waters" (pond), restoring my soul, and making me just relax and rest and get well.  Sometimes our healing comes in little bites and doses too. It's not always instant, overnight, like waving a magic wand over us.  We just need to learn to trust in the One Who has promised to "uphold you with my righteous right hand."  And that's the BEST MEDICINE of all! 


Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Morning Mercies

Thank You, Lord, for allowing me to see another sunrise! 
Thank You, Lord, for so many dear friends praying and sending their well wishes for my surgery.
Thank You, Lord, for hearing their prayers and bringing me safely through and on to better days ahead in which to give You praise and honor and glory! 
Thank You, Lord, for your healing mercy and grace.

Dear friends, I am up early this morning with the sunrise, because I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for your prayers and support during this surgery experience!  I am SO thankful to be able to sit here once again at my computer and write to you.  Thank you for all the kind messages on my last post. I am not able to answer them all individually. I am limiting my time sitting up and doing things, but I just had to let you know that I am home and doing as well as can be expected!  I did end up spending the night in the hospital after all. I apparently do not tolerate anesthesia very well, and even after talking to the anesthesiologist before the procedure, and him assuring me that he was going to use medications that should not make me sick, I still got sick.  That coupled with the pain after surgery and the need for more strong pain medicine, well...I was in NO condition to get in the car and ride an hour home.  So thankfully they placed me in a very nice private room with a view,  (although this was at night and the blinds were partially closed so you can't really SEE the view)

View behind my bed:

View in front of my bed:

View from in my bed:  Beware...this is as scary as a Halloween Mask! LOL.

This is my current glamor shot. LOL.
I know I probably shouldn't show this, but it will maybe keep unwanted suitors away. LOL.

The only real issue right now is swallowing.  It hurts to swallow, and so I am limited to soft foods and liquids.   And just general pain from muscles and nerves that were strained and stretched, etc., but hopefully that pain should dissipate soon.

So, I just wanted to let you know that I am still among the living...and I praise God for His kindness and mercy.

And while I've been writing this, the skies got even more beautiful.  Looks like a pretty day, although you know the old saying, "red sky at morning, sailors take warning..."  But our weather report shows sunny skies.

"22 Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
23 They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness."
Lamentations 3:22-23

Thank you all again.  May God bless you each and every one.

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Sunday Evening Praise

"But each day the Lord pours His unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing His songs, praying to God who gives me life."
Psalm 42:8 NLT

Couldn't let the day pass without sharing these few thoughts and blessings.  As most of you know, tomorrow I will be having some surgery.  Outpatient...nothing life threatening.  But there is always that little anxiety of the "what-ifs" nagging at one's mind when they undergo any kind of surgery. I would be untruthful if I said I didn't have any kind of fears...but I know the One who holds my life in His hands, and like the Psalmist said above "each day the Lord pours His unfailing love upon me..." so I need not fear.  And how appropriate that I received this lovely cobalt blue "pitcher" today...you may recognize it as a vintage Avon bottle from the 1970's era...yes, that would be correct. I used to have one just like this. And this evening my married son called and said he found something that made him think of me and of his childhood, and he couldn't wait to bring it over to me.  I was so surprised to unwrap the little  parcel he handed to me and find this beautiful bottle, and yes, I remembered it right away. He said when he saw it he immediately went back to his childhood and remembered seeing this in our bathroom for many years. He just had to have it give me.  I have no idea whatever happened to the original bottle that I had...we've moved so many times it probably got lost or given away or broken...but seeing this, and the love in his eyes as he wanted me to have it tonight of all nights, before my surgery tomorrow, what just such a blessing to me that I wanted to cry.  

Just a few other little notes before I head to bed early because we found out tonight I have to be at the hospital tomorrow morning by 7:30, which means we have to leave here by 6:30 a.m....

Lily Grace sends her love to you all, and she says she is going to be a very good little Brownie Scout while I am recuperating and help in every way possible.  So you know I am in good hands... 

And this praise report:
Here is a picture of our niece Shannon you've been praying for.  My sister actually took this picture as Shannon showed up at my other niece Debbie's gift shop for a visit...
"Miracle child" we are calling her...

And then last but not least, seems like drone photos are making the rounds these days. Here is an aerial photo of our beautiful little church campus:

Yes, it really is this lovely and peaceful and wonderful.
And you can see for yourself that we love to sing praises to the Lord and we have a wonderful preacher who teaches from the Word of God faithfully:

Pastor Dave was preaching from Colossians, Chapter 3:18 – 4:2
 and our choir was singing 
"Take it to the Lord in Prayer" and "Let Us Have a Little Talk with Jesus"

"What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything, everything to God in prayer.
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear.
All because we do not carry everything, everything to God in prayer!

Now let us have a little talk with Jesus, let us tell him all about our troubles
He will hear our faintest cry, and he will answer by and by
Now when you feel a little prayer wheel turning
And you know a little fire is burning
You will find a little talk with Jesus makes it right, it makes it right.

Oh, are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a heavy load of care, load of care
We should never be discouraged when we can take everything to God in prayer!

Oh, can we find a friend so faithful, who will all our sorrows share
Jesus knows our every weakness, take everything, everything to God
Take everything, everything to God
Take everything, everything to the Lord in prayer.
Take it to the Lord in prayer
Take it to the Lord in prayer
Take it, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Take it to the Lord in prayer"

Amen!!!  No matter what you are going through, "take everything, take everything to the Lord in prayer!!"

I may be away for a little while, but just keep me in your thoughts and prayers, and I will be back just as soon as possible! Love you all. Good night!!


Saturday, October 23, 2021

Saturday Odds and Ends

Thank you all for your kind words on my last post on Thankful Thursday. I had lots of things to be thankful for then, and I have a few more to add today.   Just some "odds and ends" of different little things that are kind of interesting or special in some way.  So please come along on this addendum to my thankfulness post.

First off, please excuse the poor quality of these photos. When we went for our evening walk last night, this is what we saw as we approached our walking place.  It was dusk, so the light was not very good, and I didn't have my good camera with me...just the the cell phone, and it was at a distance, but you "get the picture"  I hope.  First this deer was crossing the road in front of us, and paused to watch us coming near.

Then she bounded into the woods, white flag tail flying behind her...

And standing there in the woods was this young buck...now, this enlarged photo looks more like some kind of impressionistic painting doesn't it?  

Here's our doe again, camouflaged in the trees:

And here's the young buck, waiting for the signal to move on...

I can't get over how much these look like paintings! Maybe I should frame them!

A very pleasant way to end a busy day...

Now, let me tell you that my pre-op appointments went very well...even better than expected. I was scheduled for two different appointments, both in the same building, but one at 9:45 a.m. and the other at 1:30 p.m.  So we went expecting to spend a long day since this is about an hour from our home so no way to go home in between appointments.  However, the 9:45 appointment was over in about 15 minutes, and the nurse attending us suggested that we go over to the lab where the later appointment was scheduled and see if they could work me in earlier.  And so we did, and thank the Lord, yes, they were able to take me right in for my lab work and to meet with the anesthesiologist.  Oh, one rather little  "unpleasant surprise" was that they had to do a "Covid Test".  I was not expecting that...and thankfully this was my very first one, and I hope my last! That long Q-tip swab felt like it was poking and probing all the way to my brain!  Thankfully the results were negative! Anyway, I passed all my other lab tests and answered all the questions to their satisfaction apparently, including the memory test..."I am going to tell you three words, and I want you to repeat them back to me. And then I am going to ask you to draw the face of a clock on this piece of paper and set the time for 11:10, and then when you finish that I will ask you to repeat the three words again."  Right now I am struggling to remember those three words...the first was Cabin, (that was easy, because everyone knows I would love to live in a cabin in the woods) the second was table, (I think), and I had to ask my hubby right now if he can remember the words since he was there with me, and he thinks  one of the words was truck, but I can not honestly be sure...but I did get them right for the test yesterday, whatever they were! LOL. And so I am scheduled for surgery on Monday at 10:30 a.m. 

We were done and out of there by 10:45!  Amazing! So we stopped at our "favorite" little cafe' on the way home for some lunch.  Sadly, that was NOT so amazing. Must have been a bad day or something. All the tables were still waiting to be cleared, and so we waited for someone to clear a table that we selected, and instead the girl went around and cleared some other tables instead of the one we were waiting beside...that should have been the first clue.  After about what seemed like a ten minute wait to actually sit down at a clean table, it was another 10 minutes before the waitress took our order...now mind you, there were probably only about 3 other tables filled...but what we noticed was a lot of people must have called in take out orders because they were coming in left and right and getting their food, while we, the customers sitting in the restaurant waited.  Anyway, we finally gave our order. I ordered a quesadilla and a salad, mainly because my son Scott, who is the consummate quesadilla creator at our house, made for himself this amazing creation the night before, and my mouth was still watering for it:
His creations are always filled with the most interesting combinations. This particular one had sausage, ham, fried potatoes, scrambled eggs, spinach and of course, lots of cheese, with sour cream on the side.
So, I asked the waitress for a chicken quesadilla with spinach and cheese, envisioning something almost as nice as what Scott could make.  Well, let's just say that it wasn't even picture worthy. The chicken was dry and hard, there was hardly any cheese, and the worst part was, we had to wait almost an hour before we ever got our food...meanwhile, take out orders are going out the door, and we sat there. Hubby wanted to leave before our food came, but I was too hungry and there wasn't any other place close...so we decided that was it.  We will have to find another place to stop on our way home from the hospital from now on.  That was the only downside to our day.

Okay, on to better things.  When we got home a package arrived via Amazon. I had not ordered anything, so was not sure what this was until I opened it.  My sweet niece in N.C. had told me she was sending me a little surprise package to help out during my convalescence.  She had read the post apparently where I said I couldn't get any birdseed last week, and so she took it upon herself to have some shipped to me, along with this fun TEA word search puzzle book!  Now that's what I call thoughtful!  Now the birdies won't go hungry, and I will have something to occupy my brain!  I was tempted to start on the puzzles right away, but decided to wait until I have nothing else I can do but sit and do puzzles for a while. It will be very entertaining! I am blessed...

Then we got something in the mail that was not addressed to us but came to our address...a coupon that said "Congrats on your new home" from Home Depot.  I did not recognize the name on the address, so it got me to wondering who it could be meant for.  We have a couple of lots next to us that have been for sale, as well as a lot across the street from us that we know just sold, and also a small house that recently sold.  So I decided to check first on Zillow to see if the lots next to us had sold yet, and sure enough, they have!  And I am kind of "sneaky", in that I know how to look up on the property search through the county tax office to see who owns property around us, and sure enough, the name on the coupon that came to our address is the same name as the person who bought the two empty lots next to us! So I guess I should save this coupon for him when and if he ever shows up to build something on those lots! Oh, the offer ends November 15, 2021, so I don't see any new house going up on that lot in less than a month...so I guess the coupon is mine if I want to use it! LOL.    Anyway, the fun part was looking at the ad on Zillow for those lots...apparently the realtor had taken a lot of photos with a drone overhead, and it shows the top of our house and  some great aerial shots of Still Waters Pond!  So I thought you might want to see them too:

That is our house down at the bottom of the picture, and the lots in question are to the right. There's Still Waters Pond, and you can see the little islands that I look at all the time:

This is the view I usually see from our back porch:

Anyway, with all of these lots near us being sold, it makes me think we will eventually be getting some new neighbors. Never too soon to start praying for them to be really good neighbors.  And also praying that we can be good neighbors to them as well.

Let's see, what else is going on? Well I received a phone call a little while ago from someone I had contacted this past year through Ancestry.com...one of the distant "cousins" through my  adopted grandmother's birth family.  She is going to be in the area, well, about an hour or so away, tonight and tomorrow, and has some pictures of her grandmother, who would be my grandmother's half sister, and if there is any way possible we can meet it would be lovely.  Of course, here I am preparing for surgery on Monday, and I have church tomorrow morning, and I don't know if we will be able to pull it off or not on such short notice, but I am so happy she at least called and let me know that she hasn't forgotten about me and if there's any way possible for us to meet, it would be so nice. So we shall see what develops in the next 24 hours. She was still on the road to her relative's home when she called and didn't know what would transpire once she got there...so at least her heart is in the right place even if we can't actually make it happen this time.

Which brings me to a question I've been pondering.  If you read the story of my grandmother's birth that I posted last year,  Elva's Story, you will remember that she was given up for adoption at the age of 5 months, and this was way back in 1896.  Through my research on Ancestry.com, after having my DNA tested, I was able to figure out who my grandmother's birth parents were. Consequently, I attempted to make contact with several descendants of those birth parents.  Of course, no one had any idea that little Elva had ever existed, and this news came as a real surprise to them. Even though this happened over 125 years ago, there was still some hesitancy to accept this information as fact and a little bit of suspicion perhaps about me and my sanity might have been considered. LOL.  But now, my question is, if you know that someone you know and care about may actually have a close relative that they never knew existed, and you know that person to be a wonderful person who would love to know more about their ancestor's birth family, etc.,  what would you do? Do you make an effort to bring them together? Or do you just keep quiet and let "nature take its course"?  
Just asking for a "friend"...

Okay folks, that's enough for one day, I'd say! Tomorrow may be a busy day, so I don't know if I'll get around much, and then you know what Monday is...so thank you for your prayers and kind thoughts, and I hope to catch up with you all again as soon as possible! 

Meanwhile, I don't know if you can see the "hands reaching out" across these clouds below or not, but this was in the sky last night:

Made me think about this famous painting by Michelangelo in the Sistine chapel. The hand of God reaching out to the hand of Adam.

God is always reaching out to us...in so many ways. Are we paying attention?
Just some food for thought.

Good Night my friends.


Thursday, October 21, 2021

Thankful Thursday

 I don't exactly follow the weekly meme for "Thankful Thursday".  I just kind of do my own thing. Been kind of wandering around the house looking at this and that and thinking about things that I am thankful for.  

Of course I put at the top of the list my relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ...without Him I'd have nothing, be nothing, and have nothing to look forward to.   Next I list my family, my husband, my children, extended family, and then my friends...friends near and far, and especially including my friends here in "blogland".  I thank the Lord for each of you...and for your kind and thoughtful comments, as well as your beautiful and well written blog posts of your own. You are each a delight to me, and I thank the Lord for you!  I may not always get around to answering your comments, but I do read each and every one, and I try to get around and read your posts, but I know I miss some good ones.  I can't always keep up due to life in general, but I think you all understand this, having your own every day limitations.  But overall, we try, and we try hard to keep up with each other and encourage one another with words of kindness, thoughtfulness and sometimes just good old fashioned laughter!   

As I wandered around a bit, I noticed little "signs" here and there that made me think of the blessings of good friends, and so that is what I wanted to share with you today.  I hope you enjoy the journey with me...because I share them with you in mind...  Why not fix yourself a cup of tea (or coffee if you must), and sit back and just relax for a few moments as we "thank God for small blessings..."

Perhaps you'd like to pick up a little book and sit down and read while you sip your tea?

"Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works." 
Hebrews 10:24

"Love grows in happy hearts".

So let us be happy hearts today...so that love will grow and we can be a blessing to one another and to others we meet along life's pathway.
Thank you for spending this time with me today. 
I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

Tomorrow I will be spending the day at the hospital for my pre-op appointments, in preparation for surgery on Monday. So I won't be around much tomorrow, but hope to visit again before Monday.  Thank you for your continued prayers.

Oh, one more thing...for those of you who had been praying for our niece Shannon, I wanted to give you an update.  She had her follow up appointment with her surgeon this week, and everything seems to be healing quite well. I'd say so, because she has been back at school since the first week after her accident, and instead of staying in a wheelchair she is managing to get around using a walker, and she is already driving herself to school!  So...thank you for your prayers for her! I'd say her healing has been quite miraculous! However, prayers are still appreciated for her emotional and spiritual condition. May the Lord do as beautiful a work in her heart and mind as He has in her body. She's a lovely girl, but  she needs to find God's direction for her life. Thank you for your kind thoughts and prayers.   We know God is able!!